C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Admin decides on monorail for city
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
A decision regarding a mass rapid transport system for the union territory has finally been taken by the Administration.

It has decided to instal a monorail project in the city, choosing it over an elevated rail transit system.

The monorail project, costing Rs 3,045 crore, at the price level of 2006, has been sent to the Centre for its formal nod.

The costs exclude the expenditure on import duty and work tax for a total length of 36.08 kilometres, according to official sources.

The monorail will function on three routes.

The monorail project will have 38 stations.

The requirement for power for the project is estimated at 25 MVA by 2011 and 52 MVA by 2041.

The structural requirement of columns has been earmarked as 1.2 metres by 1.2 metres, available on central verges of city roads.

The project report, compiled by the Rail India Technical Economic Services, says the Himalaya Marg, the Madhya Marg, the Jan Marg, the Udyog Path and the Purva Marg carry peak-hour traffic of more than 4,000 vehicles.

The maximum section load in 2011 on the Madhya Marg and the Himalaya Path has been estimated at 9,754 and 4,589, respectively, with the figures on the same roads in 2041 expected to be 31,401 and 13,303, respectively.

An official survey indicates that only about 20 per cent of the approximately 14.10 lakh vehicular passenger trips per day are made by public transport, as against the ideal figure of 65 per cent for a city of the size of Chandigarh.

Around 77 per cent of the respondents are willing to shift to a good mass transport system and 53 per cent are willing to pay more.

The Administration has proposed two depots for the monorail project, one near the Botanical Garden and the other near the Mohali railway station, requiring 20 hectares at each place.

The proposed system is expected to provide savings in vehicle operating costs, fuel costs and travel time, reduction in the number of accidents and lesser pollution.

Says Mr Ved Prakash, a retired government officer, “We are not comfortable travelling by local buses. A system like monorail will be of help on city roads.”

He adds, “The system is more important in the context of the rising population graph. With the coming in of the information technology sector, monorail will be best suited to reduce traffic and increase the speed of travel.”

The Administration had received expressions of interest for the project from the Reliance Energy-Bombardier, Canada; the DS Constructions-Apollo Enterprises-American Maglev Technology, Florida, USA; the IL and FS Financial Centre-ITNL-Serco Docklands, London; the Gammon India and Gammon Infrastructure Projects, Mumbai; and the Punj Llyod-Ircon International-Kaula Lumpur Infrastructure Group Berhad, Malaysia.



Holidays galore in schools in October
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Thanks to the festive season setting in early this year, it is raining holidays in most of the city schools next month. Many schools, especially private schools will be closed for a minimum of ten days. With the terminal examinations going on in many of the schools, students are eagerly waiting for October to start when they would have more holidays and less homework.

While Dussehra is usually in October and Diwali in November. This year both the festivals are in the month of October. Gandhi Jayanti and Dussehra this year fall together on October 2, Diwali on October 21, Bhai Doojen on October 24 and Id-ul-fittr on October 25. While some schools have combined the autumn break with Dussehra or Diwali, others have done no such thing. Also, while a few schools are giving an off on Karvachauth on October 10, many are not. In some cases, the same is being included in the autumn break

In DAV School, Sector 15, apart from holidays for Dussehra and Gandhi Jayanti on October 2, the school will also be off on Karvachauth for October 10 and then later for Diwali from October 20 to 24. In St Johns School , Sector 26, the students will get a three day break till October 2 after their half-yearly examination and then again get a break from October 7 to 10. They would then again have a week off for Diwali from October 18 to 25.

Ryan International School, Sector 49, will also be off for about ten days. The school authorities have combined the Gandhi Jayanti/ Dussehra holidays with the autumn break from September 30 to October 5, followed later by Diwali holidays from October 20-26. St Stephens School, Sector 45, has no holiday on Karvachauth. However, it will be off for about ten days from September 29 to October 8 for Dussehra holidays and then later for Diwali from October 20 to 27.

Bhavan Vidyalya, Sector 27, and Manav Mangal High School, Sector 21, however, have lesser holidays. Bhavan has one holiday on October 2, followed by autumn/ Diwali break from October 19 to 26.

Students studying at government schools would, however, not be as lucky. When contacted DPI schools, Mr Ashwani Kumar, stated they would only be having holidays for Gandhi Jayanti/ Dussehra, Diwali and Id-il-fittr.



Cheers! Beer guzzling up
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
City residents have been guzzling beer like anything. A review of the consumption figures by the UT Excise Department has revealed that the consumption of beer in the last five months —- between April 2006 and August 2006 —- has gone up by almost 5 per cent, compared to the corresponding period in the last financial year.

The sales in the corresponding period also went up by about 700 per cent. The department earned a little above Rs 3 crore during the five months. Citing the shift in the policy from auctioning to allotment of liquor shops by draw of lots, officials in the Excise Department believe that sale of beer during the next summer would further shoot up.

As per the figures of the Excise Department, the maximum consumption was recorded in May, 2006. At least 1004118 bulk litres of beer was consumed during the month compared to 156780 bulk litres consumed in May, 2005. However, the consumption registered a slight decrease till August 2006. The consumption figures —-in bulk litres—— for June were 729534, July (515838) and August (306220), said an excise official.

Explaining the reason, sources in the department disclosed that due to the ongoing confrontation among the companies manufacturing different brands of beer and the UT Excise Department, the lifting of beer had decreased.

While the Chandigarh Administration has categorically told the representatives of the companies not to form a “cartel” against the administration stand of not agreeing to increase in EBP (Ex-Brewery Price), the companies continued to sell their stocks to the retailers at increased rates. The act was in contravention of the condition no. 64 of the conditions governing the grant and operation of wholesale licence of 2006-07.

The department had several times pulled up the companies for not issuing cash memos to the retailers. The licence of some of the companies was suspended for a short period. Officials had categorically told the companies that neither any permit to bring liquor into the city nor the pass to ferry liquor from local godown to the retailer would be an issue.

A case filed by the manufacturer of a popular brand of beer against the department for not allowing it to increase the rates had recently been dismissed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court

Popular brands not available

Popular brands of beer like Kingfisher, Haywards 5000, Thunderbolt and Godfather are not available at a majority of the shops for the past over one month. The reason is that the companies are not selling their products in the city due to differences with the Excise Department over the ex-brewery price. The department should take action against the erring companies, feel the consumers of beer.



Excise Dept raid on Chandigarh Club caterers
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Teams of the UT Excise and Taxation Department today conducted a surprise check at the Chandigarh Club, Sector 1, here late this evening following complaints of evasion of value added tax (VAT) by the five caterers engaged by the club management.

There was information that some of the caterers were evading the tax on the sales, as they had not taken the tax number under the VAT regime from the Sales Tax Department. At least five caterers — three big and two small — had been engaged by the club management.

Deputy Commissioner R.K.Rao said that apart from complaints of VAT evasion, the department was also looking into the evasion of entertainment tax by the club management.

Sources disclosed that records of the contractors had been seized. "We had information that two of the caterers had not taken the VAT number. We are checking the records of three of the contractors," said an official.

The record of the club was also being checked to find out any anomaly. The department was also verifying whether the contractors were registered under VAT. President of the Chandigarh Club Mahesh Bassi said they had repeatedly told the caterers to take the Sales Tax number. "The contractors give an undertaking to the club management in this regard. We would cancel the contract with the caterers if anything wrong was found on their part," he added.



Now, pay more for washing of your vehicle
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
In yet another jolt to your household budget, the rates for washing of cars and two-wheelers at the service stations being run by the petrol stations in the city have gone up.

Even as the increase has come in for criticism from the car and two-wheeler owners, the petrol station dealers justified the hike as the cost of inputs such as water and labour had gone up. In fact, the residents are at their wits’ end as there is no uniformity in the rates being charged by different petrol stations.

A random survey of the city petrol stations revealed that the prices of washing the cars ranged between Rs 120 and Rs 180, depending on the size of the car and “quality” of washing demanded by the owner. Similarly, for scooters and motor cycles, the prices ranged between Rs 35 and Rs 50.

Some of the petrol stations, particularly in the southern sectors, recently displayed the new rates much to chagrin of the residents, who rued that the hike was “unwarranted” and “unjustified”. “The hike coming in the Monsoons, when the vehicles needed more services, was all the more unjustified when there had been no water tariff hike,” Lieut-Col SK Sharma alleged.

With the petrol prices going up at regular intervals, the hike was another blow to the household budget. The Chandigarh Administration should step in and implement the uniform rates as currently there was uniformity in rate charged by the different petrol stations, demanded Mr Sukvir Singh, a scooter owner of Sector 20.

However, if members of the Chandigarh Petroleum Dealers Association are to be believed the increase was effected several months back and it was being implemented by the members in a phased manner.

The decision to hike the rate in not recent. It was taken several months back in the wake of the hike in the water tariff and labour charges and the members were left to implement the decision as per their convenience, informed Mr Amanpreet Singh, a former secretary of the association.

Another petrol station owner in Sector 31, Mr Pradeep Kumar, said the hike was overdue in the wake of the steep hike in input costs, including water, labour and polishes.



Varun’s father passes out at funeral
Tribune News Service

Varun’s friends mum

Family members of the deceased said that both of Varun’s friends who were present when the clash took place, were not very forthcoming about what exactly happened that fateful night. The girls, too, it is learnt, have said that they only vaguely recall of what transpired that night when Varun and his friends got out of the car to buy beer. All four refused to speak to the press about the incident.

Panchkula, September 20
Dinesh Nath sat stunned as his son’s pyre was lit at the Mani Majra cremation ground this morning. Between bouts of crying uncontrollably and passing out, Dinesh Nath, father of Varun Nath who died in a drunken brawl between two groups on Monday night, was a picture of inconsolable grief.

Varun’s pyre was lit by his cousin, Karan Nath, a Bollywood film actor, while the family members stood together, holding hands, sharing the sorrow of a promising life cut short in a moment of madness. Varun’s two friends with whom he spent the last evening before the drunken brawl, Varun Sharma and Raju, attended the cremation though the girls, Paramjit Kaur and Minash, chose to skip the funeral.

Family members said that the main concern was to help Mr Dinesh Nath deal with the tragedy that has befallen them. “He is a diabetic and passed out a couple of times during the cremation itself. We are trying our best to keep him occupied and in conversation so that he can give vent to his feelings,” a relative said.

Earlier, Varun’s body was brought to his Dhakoli residence this morning from the mortuary.

Amidst heart-breaking scenes, family members performed the last rituals before leaving for the cremation ground.

Meanwhile, cable operator Manish Puri today surrendered in the court of the Additional District and Sessions Judge, Mr AD Gaur. He was sent on a two-day police remand while two boys from the group which attacked Varun, Imran and Deepak, admitted to hospital after the incident, are still undergoing treatment at General Hospital, Sector 6.

Police sources said the statements of Varun’s friends were recorded in which they corroborated the sequence of events mentioned in the FIR registered by the police. However, when contacted, both of them refused to talk about the incident.



Shatabdi catering staff fined
for travelling without pass
Amrita Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
The catering staff traveling on the Chandigarh-New Delhi morning Shatabdi has been fined Rs 33,000 for traveling without the requisite pass. A surprise check conducted on the train by Mr P Sharma, Special Railway Magistrate, Haryana, on Monday found that the staff was traveling without a permit.

He also found that juice packs, which were being served to the passengers, had crossed the date of expiry.

It was also found that a different brand of mineral water was being served other than the permitted one. The caterers can only serve the brand ‘Rail Neer’. However, during the surprise raid some bottles of a different brand were found.

The pass provided by the Railways entitles the catering staff to travel on the train and also to serve food to the passengers. It was, however, found that the passes were only valid till September 9 this year and that they had not been renewed after that.

When contacted Mr RK Tandon, Divisional Railway Manager, Ambala Division, stated that the contractors should have renewed the passes. However, they couldn’t get it renewed. “They have been fined and that should ensure that such things don’t happen in the future.”

He further informed that continuous checks were being conducted as there had been complaints. “We have been wanting to improve the service. We have, in fact, written to the MD of the IRCTC and also regular checks are conducted at least twice a month and also when ever an officer travels, he checks. The checks have been intensified now and even fines are imposed to improve things,” he informed.

However, when contacted one of the catering staff claimed that they were not always at fault. “ The hot boxes and refrigeration facility provided in the train most of the times is not working. What can we do if the water and juice is not cold and the food not hot,” he questioned.

He, however, had no explanation of juices being served beyond the expiry date.

Mr Tandon, too, conceded that it was “Not always that the caterer is at fault.” “We have periodic overhaul of the coach after 18 months and we ensure that we check everything,” he stated.



Dimpy murder: kin seek CBI probe
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Alleging that the Chandigarh police has not been investigating properly the murder case of Prabjinder Singh Dimpy, shot dead at the Sukhna Lake on July 7, his mother and widow today demanded CBI inquiry into the case.

Addressing mediapersons, Dimpy’s mother Gurpreet Kaur and widow Pawandeep Kaur said they had no faith in the Chandigarh police and sought a CBI inquiry to unravel the mystery behind the killing.

Expressing a threat perception to their lives as Dimpy’s murderers had been moving freely, they demanded security from the state government at the earliest.

Expressing dissatisfaction over the functioning of the Chandigarh police, they alleged that it had been dilly dallying on the issue.

They added that the police had been keeping them in the dark and saying it was verifying mobile call details to trace the killers.

Casting doubts over the police investigation, they said the police did not interrogate Hanveev Kaur properly about her role in the incident.

Pointing to a political angle to the killing, Ms Gurpreet Kaur named a senior Akali leader, alleging that he had threatened her to warn his son against attending political rallies and functions.

She maintained that her son was not a gangster, as portrayed by the media.

She named Sandeep Bhan and Rocky, who had told Raju, a labourer, to keep an eye on Dimpy’s movements at the lake that fateful day.

She claimed that Sandeep and Rocky had been seen attending political rallies of the senior Akali leader.

She alleged that Dimpy was shot at twice, once at the lake and later at Harneev’s house by her father.



Congress’ US tilt choking agriculture, says MCPI (U)
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Agriculture is being strangulated in the country because of the Congress government’s leaning towards the US-led imperialist forces, said Mr Jagjit Singh Lyallpuri, general secretary of the Marxist Communist Party of India (United), while addressing a press conference here today.

He was speaking on the concluding day of the four-day All India Special Unity Congress of the MCPI (United), at the Kisan Bhavan here.

He said, “Nothing concrete has happened in the name of land reforms, as claimed by the government. The holdings are getting smaller and smaller putting the farmers out of job. The existing smallholdings of the majority of the farmers are further shrinking leading to a very peculiar situation. It will soon be going out of hands for the government, if no immediate steps were taken,” he said.

Mr Lyallpuri said the government was cheating the masses in the name of contractual employment. This is virtually a ‘hire and fire policy with inborn defects’.

The session started with a reply to a discussion on the political draft resolution presented yesterday.

Mr V.B.Cherian clarified the concept of Marxism and Leninism with specific reference to the Indian situation.

Mr M.V.Reddy, a prominent leader from Andhra Pradesh and a member of the All India Preparatory Committee, presented the draft constitution of the MCPI (U). The resolution was accepted.

Resolutions on price rise; unemployment, corruption, agrarian crises, communalism, Iran, Iraq and Lebanon situation and the civil rights came up for detailed discussion.

Seven committees were constituted, besides the Control Commission. Members of the commission include Mr M.D.Gouse, Mr N.Sudershan and Mr Kirpal Singh Hans. A total of 345 delegates participated in the conference from different parts of the country including Punjab, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan.



PSUs’ admn weak, says CVC
Defence Production Dept asked to take action
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Observing that administration in defence public sector undertakings (PSUs), particularly in the Ordnance Factory Board was “generally weak and not vigilant”, the Central Vigilance Commission has asked the Department of Defence Production (DDP) to look into the issue and take necessary action.

At a meeting held between the commission and the chairmen and chief vigilance officers of various organisations under the control of the DDP earlier this year, it was also felt that it was up to the DDP to evolve suitable guidelines for its units, keeping in mind the peculiarity of problems faced by them.

The minutes of the meeting, which also included representatives of the DDP, were recently circulated to various organisations concerned.

There are eight defence sector PSUs having multiple units located across the country, while the Ordnance Factory Board, having headquarters at Kolkata, has 40 factories under it.

These produce a wide variety of military equipment, ranging from aircraft and ships to weapons, vehicles, engineering equipment, weapons and ammunition, combat vehicles, uniform items and ordnance stores.

While some CVC guidelines have helped the PSUs to improve their corporate governance, the overall problem in this sector was complex, especially in the aeronautics and electronics industry. It was, therefore, felt that the CVC guidelines needed some fine-tuning in areas like vendor development and payment of interest free mobilisation advance.

On the question of interest-free advance, the commission was of the view that as far as possible, it should be avoided.

On vendor development for specialised items, it was felt that in special circumstances PSUs could accept a single vendor at the initial stage, but efforts should continue to explore the possibility of developing alternate vendors.

In response to some of the chairmen of production units stressing upon the need for spot purchases, which was required due to fluid market situation and prices the commission was of the view that with proper advance planning there should be no occasion for such actions.

However, in extreme necessity, a committee should be formed to take such decisions.

The commission also observed that in a number of cases, there was a wide variation between the estimated and actual prices of items purchased or contracts entered into.

This, it was brought out, was due to improper assessment and planning at the initial stages.



Retiring DSPs’ fate hangs in balance
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Will seven UT Deputy Superintendents of Police (DSP) continue in service even after attaining superannuation in the coming few months?

Yes, they can, provided the Punjab Government decides to raise the retirement age of its employees to 60 years. At present the retirement age is 58 years.

Since Chandigarh follows the Punjab pattern in service matters relating to its employees, these DSPs of the Chandigarh Police are anxiously waiting for the cabinet sub-committee headed by the Punjab’s Deputy Chief Minister, Mrs Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, to submit its report to the state government by the end of this month.

Any delay in submission of the recommendations may deprive these DSPs a chance to continue in service. The Punjab Government is also keen to expedite its decision before the model code of conduct comes in force in the state. It is pertinent to mention here that the state will go to the polls before the end of February next year. Normally, the model code of conduct comes into effect three to four months before the actual poll dates are announced.

At best the state has time till end of October to take any decision about demands of its employees. Delay, sources say, is because of opposition from within about raising the retirement age.

These DSPs are Vijay Pal Singh (security), Prem Singh Malik (east), Devinder Kumar Thakur (Home Guards and CID), Arjun Singh Jaggi (Police Lines), Inderjit Singh (EOW), Mohan Lal Verma (Operation Cell) and Om Prakash (Crime Branch).

Similarly, the fate of seven inspectors, who are in line of promotion to become DSP, also hinges on the Punjab Government’s decision. If the retirement age is being increased to 60 years, their dreams of becoming DSP in the near future are shattered and they have to wait for another two years to become DSP.

The matter is vastly being discussed in the Police Department. Among these DSPs is Prem Singh Malik who was promoted in the recent past and has served for a short time on the post.



1-room tenements: residents to get notices soon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Residents of the one-room tenements, constructed under the rehabilitation scheme of the Administration a few years ago would soon be receiving individual notices to renew the lease of their tenement. According to sources in the MCC, the step is being taken after the MCC received only one application for renewal despite giving a one-month notice to the residents.

It may be mentioned here that in 1998, the UT Administration had, under its rehabilitation scheme, constructed 2,765 tenements in Sectors 52 and 53 near Vikas Nagar, Mauli Jagran and Kajehri. Of these 2,655 tenements had been allotted. Hundred houses are still lying vacant. The Estate Office had allotted these houses for five years. According to the rules in the year 2003, the tenements’ lease had to be renewed.

However, once the term period got over, no steps were taken to renew the lease. According to sources, it was found in these surveys that commercial activities were going on in many of the tenements. It was also found that many tenements had been further sold on power of attorney. These two factors are being considered as a major reason for no one turning up to renew the lease. The MCC officials now hope that they will receive more applications, failing which strict action would be taken.



Baton brings peace message from Afghanistan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh September 20
Spreading the message of peace across the countries of Afghanistan, Pakistan and India, the ‘Peace Baton’, reached the city today.

It was handed over to U.T. Bharat Scouts and Guides. Director, Public Instructions, (schools) and State Chief Commissioner Scouts, Mr Ashwani Kumar; State Secretary, Mr Prem Puri; State Organizing Commissioner, Mr R.K Sharma, received the ‘Peace Baton’ on behalf of the UT administration.

Carrying the message of peace from Afghanistan, the ‘Peace Baton’ reached Wagah Border in Pakistan and was handed over to the Bharat Scouts and Guides of Punjab on September 15. The baton reached Govt. Model Senior Secondary School (GMSSS), Sector 10, in a marvelous procession. There was a gathering of about 1000 scouts and guides. An impressive cultural programme was presented, which included a group song ‘We Are The World’ by GMSSS, Sector-8, and enthusiastic giddha and bhangra performances by GMSSS-I0 & GMSSS-47.

Mr Ashwani Kumar stressed that the need of the hour was to work for peace and harmony among neighboring countries. The ‘Peace Baton’ will be handed over to the state of Haryana on the Haryana-Chandigarh border tomorrow.



Nukkad games to create VAT awareness
Our Correspondent

Mohali, September 20
The Mohali district unit of the Department of Excise and Taxation has planned to hold nukkad game shows to create awareness among the public regarding VAT compliance.

Mr Gurtej Singh, Assistant Excise and Taxation Commissioner (AETC) , said here today that such shows were likely to start soon. He said that the shows would be organised to make the public aware of the advantages of taking a bill from shopkeepers after making purchases. For every sale above Rs 100 a trader was under statutory obligation to issue a bill but if asked for he had to issue a bill even for a lesser amount. If he failed to do so he could be penalised.

It is learnt that such shows would be organised about once a week and at happening places like busy market areas of the town. A message of the department will be spread in an informal way stressing on the point of procuring bills.

He said the department had launched an intensive public awareness campaign on VAT and the advantages of obtaining a bill. This message was also conveyed to the public during a Trade Fair in Phase VIII here which closed on September 17.

Stressing on the need of obtaining a bill after every purchase, Ms Baldeep Kaur, ETO, conveyed the message interwoven in the cultural programme organised at the Trade Fair. She was assisted in spreading the message by Mr Nirmal Singh, ETO, and Ms Pardeep Dhillon and Jaswinder Mavi, both inspectors.

He stressed on the need to pay VAT and to take a genuine bill as VAT already stood charged by the trader in the price quoted by him. If no bill was issued there was a possibility that some trader might pocket the amount which was supposed to reach the government treasury. The amount collected this way was used by the government to provide better facilities.

The AETC appealed to various trade organisations to ensure compliance of the VAT Act. He said the Mohali Industries Association had also decided to actively associate itself with the cause.



Checking intensified for PM’s visit
Our Correspondent

Mohali, September 20
The police has intensified checking in the town in connection with the visit of the Prime Minister on September 27.

Dr Manmohan Singh is coming to the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER) to lay the foundation stone of the Indian Institute of Science which is to come up in Sector 81, here.

The police carried out a checking of vehicles at special nakas laid for the purpose. Vehicles were stopped for checking of documents. These nakas were set up at various points in the town.

The Deputy Commissioner, Mr Tejveer Singh, and the SSP, Mr Naunihal Singh, today reviewed the security arrangements being made at NIPER. Yesterday Mr S.K. Sharma, IG, Patiala Zone, had visited NIPER and also inspected the route to be followed by the Prime Minister.

As many as 1200 police personnel are being deployed at strategic points as part of the security arrangements being made in connection with the visit of the VVIP.



Drug smugglers sent to Amritsar centre
Our Correspondent

Mohali, September 20
All six alleged drug smugglers arrested by the Mohali police are being sent to the Joint Interrogation Centre at Amritsar.

It is learnt that they will be sent to Amritsar tomorrow and will remain there till September 23 as they have been remanded in police custody till that date. The centre at Amritsar deals with narcotics. The findings of the interrogation centre would be sent to the Mohali police.

The police here continued the interrogation of the arrested persons but nothing much had been revealed by them so far.

The police had busted a gang of drug smugglers and allegedly recovered 432 grams of heroin valued at about Rs 50 lakh in the international market. The police had also allegedly recovered opium from two of them.

Four of the arrested persons belong to the Machiwara area while two hail from villages falling under Jharkhand.

The arrested persons were Khushwant Singh, alias, Jodha, Nakshdeep Singh, Satnam Singh, alias, Sonu, Baljinder Singh, alias Jinda, Imdad Hussain and Mohammad Inam.



City Museum rechristened
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
The name of the City Museum has been changed by the Chandigarh Administration to Chandigarh Architecture Museum. A press release here today said that additional charge of the Chandigarh Architecture Museum(CAM) has been given to Mr V. N. Singh, Director, Government Museum and Art Gallery, Chandigarh.

The Chandigarh Administration established the Chandigarh Architecture Museum in 1997 to preserve invaluable documents, drawings and sketches pertaining to the design, construction and development of this city, which were lying in their original form in the Department of Architecture and in the Government Museum and Art Gallery in order to commemorate one of the most significant experiments in urban planning in the world.

The experiment was initiated and patronised by Le Corbusier, the world famous architect, and nurtured and brought to completion by a brilliant and dedicated team of architects — Pierre Jeanneret, Maxwell Fry, Jane Drew and professional architects of Punjab.

The objectives of the museum are to document and display the sequential planning and architectural development of City Beautiful.



Bird hit delays flight to Delhi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Passengers travelling by the Indian flight from New Delhi to the city had a narrow escape when their plane was hit by a bird while approaching for landing. The plane, however, landed without any passenger being hurt.

The right wing of the plane was damaged due to the bird hit.

Passengers waiting to board the flight for Delhi from the city had to wait for four hours before the plane was repaired.

A team of engineers from New Delhi was flown in by the IC 881 Delhi-Amritsar-Sharjah flight which was diverted to the city.

The Indian flight took off in the evening at about 7 pm after the wing was replaced. While passengers booked on the flight took a refund for their ticket and made alternative arrangements of travel, others waited patiently for the plane to be repaired. When contacted an Indian official stated that it was an accident.



Hussain is Cong minority cell chief
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
Mr Anwar Hussain has been appointed chairman of the District Congress of the Punjab Pradesh Congress (Minority Cell) at a function organised at Community Centre, Phase-VII, Mohali.

Mr Atique-ur-Rehman, state chairman of the cell, while addressing a gathering of Akali-BJP workers, claimed that he would approach the Chief Minister of Punjab for reservation of four seats in the Assembly elections and two in Parliament for the minority community.

Mr Anish Durani, general secretary of the cell, spoke on the problems the minority community has been facing while Bibi Nagina Begum, chairperson of Muslim Welfare Society, termed the Congress a secular party represented by the people of all walks of life.



Postal employees’ union conference concludes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
The biannual conference of the All-India Postal Employees Union concluded on September 18. The conference was attended by delegates from all districts of Punjab. General Secretary Des Raj Sharma spoke against the anti-people economic policies of the Central Government and called upon the workers to be prepared to strike work on December 14.



Watch out

Diwan Manna
Diwan Manna

City-based photographer Diwan Manna is in Delhi today for his showing on conceptual photographs titled ‘Ages of Separation’ curated by Dr Alka Pande and inaugurated by the French Ambassador to India, Dominique Girard at The Visual Art Gallery, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road, Delhi.

Manna recently came from Firminy, a small town in Central France, considered to be the second largest architectural accomplishment of Le Corbusier after Chandigarh. He was commissioned to click the people and architecture of Firminy for a photography exhibition “Regards Croises Franco-Indiens” (Indo-French Glances) on Corbusier’s works to be mounted later this year in France.

The exhibition will be on display till September 26 at the Visual Arts Gallery and then will be shown at The Art Room in Sainik Farms from September 29 to October 15.



Passing Through

Dr Geeta Mehta
Dr Geeta Mehta, president, Hospital Infection Society of India

Q: What brings you to Chandigarh?

A: I am here to prepare for the national conference on ‘Infection Control —The Challenge Ahead” to be organised at the Government Medical College and Hospital, Chandigarh, from February 15 to 18, 2007.

Q: What topics would be covered at the conference?

A: We are planning to cover a wide range of topics such as disinfection and strerilisation, antibiotic policy, prevention of transmission of blood-borne infections in hospital, occupational health, education in infection control, new technologies, management of serious infections and others.

Q: Who will the conference benefit?

A: Discussions would be on various measures to be taken for preventing and curing hospital acquired infections. This will benefit the common man at a large.

— Bipin Bhardwaj



3 booked for duping Patiala resident of Rs 12 lakh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
The police has booked three persons, including a city resident, for allegedly duping a Patiala resident of Rs 12 lakh on the pretext of sending him abroad.

Giving details, sources in the economic offences wing (EOW) of the Chandigarh Police said Mr Raj Kumar of Rakhra village in Patiala district lodged a complaint, alleging that Gagan Prakash Sharma of New Mumbai in Maharashtra, Bedu Prakash of Yamuna Nagar and Parminder Singh of Sector 46 had taken Rs 12 lakh from him on the pretext of sending him to Canada. They neither sent him to Canada nor returned his money.

A case of cheating and criminal conspiracy under sections 420 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code has been registered.


Mr Munish Goyal of Swagat Restaurant, Sector 26, reported to the police that his servant Deepak, a resident of Sector 33, had stolen Rs 40,000 from his restaurant on September 10. A case of theft under Section 381 of the IPC has been registered.


Ms Sarla Devi Kirpal of Sector 37-D filed a complaint to the police, alleging that Rs 3600, gold jewellery, silver utensils and two wrist watches were stolen from her house during day time on Tuesday. She told the police that her purse was stolen earlier in the day, and later she found her house ransacked. The police said the thieves might have used the keys found in her purse to open the house. A case under section 380 of the IPC has been registered in this connection.

Held for snatching

Mr Aman Bhasin of Sector 15-A reported to the police that Rakesh Kumar of Mani Majra had snatched his purse, containing Rs 230, in the Sector 15 market on Tuesday. He raised an alarm, following which the public nabbed the accused. He was later handed over to the police. A case has been registered.


Two persons were injured in two separate road accidents in various parts of the city on Tuesday.

A cyclist, Mr Babu Ram, of Shastri Nagar, Mani Majra, sustained injuries after being hit by a car driven by Jagdeep Singh of Morinda near the bridge in Shastri Nagar. He was admitted to the PGI. The police has arrested the car driver.

In another incident, a tractor driven by Balwinder Singh collided with an Indica car near Khudda Lahora village. Mr Sudagar Singh of Mullanpur village, who was sitting in the car, sustained injuries in the mishap and was rushed to the PGI.

Two separate cases of causing hurt due to rash and negligent driving have been registered in the various police stations in the city.



Unidentified body found in park
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
The body of an unidentified man in his mid-sixties was found in a park near the Sector 20 mosque here this evening. The police, while ruling out the possibility of any foul play behind the death, said no visible injury marks were found on the body. It said the incident came to light at around 5:15 pm when someone informed the police that a body was lying on benches under a shed in the park. The police reached the spot and recovered the body.

A police official said no documents were found which could help in establishing the identity of the man. The man having a frail body, might have been suffering from some disease, he said.

The police shifted the body to the Sector 16 General Hospital and initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the Criminal Procedure Code.



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |